Podcast Transcript: Hubba-Wha?! Episode #19

Published: September 15, 2023
Categories: Transcripts

Click here for original audio.

Transcription provided by Katilyn Miller.

Hubba-Wha?! Episode 301 – A Salute to All Nations But Mostly America

[Clip of Sam the Eagle plays]

SAM THE EAGLE: (clears throat) I realize I’m interrupting your steady stream of ninjas, sleeping puppies, and pirated music videos but it is time to (microphone reverberation in voice) fill these tubes with a tribute to America. How do I make this tribute thing work?

[microphone feedback]

[Clip ends]

[Hubba-Wha?! theme music plays]

BECCA PETUNIA: Welcome to (in echo sounding voice) Hubba-Wha?! (in normal voice) A Muppet Quiz Show Brought To You By ToughPigs.com! It’s your favorite quiz show that’s not like the others! Here, Muppet fans, Muppet professionals, and everyone in between competes for fabulous prizes and to see who’s this week’s Toughest Pig!

I’m your host, Becca Petunia of ToughPigs.com! Today on (in echo sounding voice) Hubba-Wha?!, (in normal voice) it’s time for a Salute to All Nations But Mostly America. That’s right, it’s a glorious three-hour finale that…

[Danny laughs]

BECCA: Hang on… Okay, yeah. I’m getting a text from Producer Joe Hennes.

[Danny laughs]

BECCA: I’ve only got a minute and a half.

Well, hopefully we can compromise and find some place in between three hours and a minute and a half. And today our contestants will be answering questions about countries all over the world, and that includes America. You know, so many countries have their own version of Sesame Street, and at a time, The Muppet Show was aired in almost 108 nations. The Muppets are some of the most international performers of all time! Meanwhile, I’ve been to a grand total of one country that wasn’t the United States. But I know a lot about America!

Well, if I wanna learn about other countries, you’d think I’d need to talk to a world traveler like Global Grover. However, there’s another way I can learn about the world and that’s through Muppet Wiki. Because, as always, the questions we’ll be dealing with today were written by me, with help from that amazing Muppet resource Muppet Wiki. And speaking of, let’s agree to play fair today. Please don’t look at Muppet Wiki, or any other resource, during this game. Cheating is against the American way, and also the British way.

Anyway, before we travel the world, I’m going to need to see your passports. That’s why you’ll be introducing yourselves in our first game, (in echo sounding voice) To Tell a Face. (in normal voice) Contestants, buzz in to answer three questions about yourself. Whoever buzzes in first will get introduced first.

Ready? Go!

[Buzz in ding]

BECCA: All right, that’s Danny. So, Danny, the first question that I’m going to ask you. What’s your name?

DANNY HORN: My name is Danny Horn.

BECCA: All right. Excellent work. That is correct.

DANNY: Alright.

BECCA: Second question, you know, listen we all know so much about your history with the Muppets. Danny Horn, of course, founder of Muppet Zine and ToughPigs and co-founder of Muppet Wiki. But Danny, what kind of Muppet projects are you currently working on?

DANNY: My current Muppet project is a Twitter feed and a Facebook feed called Muppet Pictures, where I just have a whole bunch of Muppet pictures that I’ve collected and I want to share them with the world. And so I’m sharing them three pictures a day. And enjoying that very much.

BECCA: Danny, I gotta say, I love that feed. I feel like I’ve mentioned this on your podcast or on my podcast or yelled it at no one, but I love that feed. You know, when I first saw, and I didn’t know it was you, and I saw there was an account called Muppet Pictures that had followed me and I was like, it’s going to be the same 12 pictures, isn’t it?

DANNY: Oh, no.

[J.D. laughs]

BECCA: It’s going to be that same picture of just like, okay, it’s the stock image of Fozzie Bear and his head is weirdly shaped like an egg for no reason like in that new Fozzie Bear stock photo they used.

DANNY: Yeah.

BECCA: But no, it’s not. It’s consistently surprising and like high quality images that even I haven’t seen. It really, really brightens up my day to see it.

DANNY: I’m trying to make Twitter a little bit more of a decent place to spend time. This is my contribution.

BECCA: We appreciate it. And you’re working on other projects as well. Why don’t you, why don’t you tell us a little bit about those right at the start.

DANNY: All right. I also have a blog and a podcast called Superheroes Every Day. Working right now, especially on that podcast, it’s a comedy podcast about pivotal moments in superhero movie history, where we take a look at a superhero movie every week and split it up into three acts according to the Syd Field 3-act structure. And walk through the whole movie, analyzing it and making witty and intelligent conversation along the way.

Becca has been on an episode that was about Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer. And she’ll be on another episode which we’re gonna record pretty soon.

BECCA: Yeah, who knows if it’ll be out by then but by the time this is out.

DANNY: You can find Superheroes Every Day on Spotify or anywhere where you get your podcast.

BECCA: And last question that I’m going to ask you, which Muppet do you think should be president of the United States?

DANNY: (in softer voice) Uh, which Muppet should be president… (in normal voice) I think it would have to be Big Bird because he looks great in a tie. And, I dunno, he’s very positive. And that was the first Muppet that I thought of.

J.D. HANSEL: Did you write that unproduced script about Big Bird becoming president or running for president?

DANNY: I did not. It would be a good idea though, right?

J.D.: I don’t know. Maybe.

DANNY: People like to vote for tall people and he’s the tallest one there is.

J.D.: Yeah, okay, you’re right. They actually should have produced that script, okay.

[Danny laughs]

BECCA: All right. Well, Danny, that’s 20 points for all of those correct answers. So that puts you in the lead. But before we move on, our second contestant, J.D., what’s your name?

J.D.: My name is J.D. Hansel.

BECCA: Right. And as has been established, the J.D. stands for John Denver and the Muppets: A Christmas Together.

J.D.: That’s true.

BECCA: I like to remind everyone of that.

J.D.: I didn’t think that joke was going to stay in that first episode.

[Danny laughs]

J.D.: And not only do you keep it in, you’ve referenced it repeatedly and it makes my heart very happy.

BECCA: Mmhmm, mmhmm. I think it’s hilarious. John Denver and the Muppets: A Christmas Together Hansel.

So J.D., you’re also a writer for ToughPigs, as well as working on some podcast stuff. What’s your history with the Muppets?

J.D.: Well, you know, Becca, it’s funny because in many ways it, like, directly parallels a lot of Danny’s career with Muppet fan stuff. In 1992 I actually started my own Muppet fan zine but mine was called… well, okay. I used the other part of the word magazine. So it was called Maga-Muppet.

[Becca and Danny laugh]

J.D.: But I need everyone listening to understand that at the time, at the time, that didn’t mean what it means to today. The context was totally different. Nobody could have foreseen what that was going to become. Fortunately, when the internet came along, I left that all behind and started a Muppet fan site. It was called FundThePigs.com. And I know, through a modern lens, that sounds like a copaganda website. And yes, most people thought that’s what it was even then.

I know the slogan “fuzzy and blue lives matter” maybe hasn’t aged well…

[Danny laughs]

J.D.: But in that particular cultural moment, I thought it was clear that I was talking about getting more money behind Muppet projects at a time when the Henson Company and Sesame Workshop were really struggling financially.

Now, it is true that the FundThePigs forum became the hotbed for certain…you know, the development of certain, uh, hateful movements and demonstrations that I’d rather not talk about right now. But I didn’t know all that was going on because I was focused on my next project.

I’d gotten really into puppet building and was trying to document all the materials that the Muppets were made out of. So those of us building replicas would know what foams to use, how to make the eyes, which fabrics would stay in good shape for a long time and which fabrics would pill. So, that was my intent when I started Pilled Wiki, which I could not have predicted would become the most popular information sharing site for alt right conspiracy theories to date.

[Danny laughs]

J.D.: I really didn’t expect the editors to take it in that direction. But honestly, by the time I started my current fan project, the Twitter account TuckerPictures, that was actually just a few months ago and I knew exactly what I was doing.

DANNY: Yeah, no. That’s your fault. Yeah, that’s on you. [laughs]

J.D.: So that’s me. Apart from that, I write for ToughPigs and host the ToughPigs podcast… Uh, what is it called? The Great Muppet Fandom panel.

BECCA: Yeah, I frequently said that’s my favorite of the ToughPigs podcasts.

J.D.: I know. I heard you saying that the other day when I was listening to you on another podcast.

BECCA: That’s true.

J.D.: I heard you starting to say that Moving Right Along was maybe your favorite. I was like, “Uh oh. Am I losing my status?” And then you said, “Actually, J.D.’s is my favorite.” I’m like, “Yes! Haha!”

[Becca and Danny laugh]

J.D.: I mean, I love Moving Right Along dearly. I love that podcast but my gosh, that title of Becca’s Number One, oh it means a lot to me. It upsets other people and I feel genuinely bad for them but oh, it means a lot to me.

BECCA: I got to be consistent. And I don’t know, I guess the third question I’m going to ask you is what Muppet do you think should be president of the United States?

J.D.: Oh looking around the room. Looking around the room. Um, Uh, Constantine. Look, I just feel like I don’t know what would happen but whatever would happen would happen quickly and explosively.

BECCA: The problem is that Constantine is… Constantine’s… I don’t think he’s a U.S. citizen.

J.D.: Um, all right, all right, all right. Looking around the room. Looking around the room. The Swedish Chef.

[Danny laughs]

BECCA: Okay, he’s…he… could be naturalized. Who knows?

[J.D. laughs]

BECCA: You just keep choosing the European ones. All right. Well, either way, J.D., I’m gonna give you 20 points as well.

J.D.: Way too many. You should be deducting points.

BECCA: Eh, we’ll see.

J.D.: There’s time.

BECCA: Nice work, both of you. And it sounds like you’re ready to board this plane and fly to our next destination. A game we like to call (in echo sounding voice) Can You Guess? (in normal voice) Like I said earlier, at its height, The Muppet Show was aired in almost 108 countries.

[Clip from The Muppet Show]



FROG: You see, we’ve just learned that The Muppet Show is being shown in 108 different countries.

STATLER: Uh oh, better get out your old army uniform.

WALDORF: Yes, with 108 angry countries, there’s bound to be trouble.

[Statler and Waldorf laugh]

[Clip ends]

BECCA: Or more than 108 countries, or less? Honestly, we’ve never gotten a definitive answer. There’s a whole Muppet Wiki article about how we don’t know how many countries The Muppet Show aired in. But we can be pretty sure that the show aired in at least 70 countries because the Muppet Newsman gave us a specific list in a word search in an old Muppet Fan Club newsletter. I’ll post a link.

In this game, I’m going to give you a Muppet-themed clue. The answer to each question will be a country where The Muppet Show aired during its original run. Your goal is to buzz in and name the country. So I’m going to give you a Muppet-themed clue and your goal is to buzz in and name the country that I’m looking for. All of these are countries where The Muppet Show was aired during its original run.

Now, each of these questions is worth two points. Please wait until I finish reading the clue to buzz in so our world travelers at home can play along.

Ready? Let’s fly.

Question one. Muppet performer Carmen Osbahr is from this country.

[Clock ticking sound]

[Buzz in ding]

BECCA: Danny.

DANNY: Is it Mexico?

BECCA: It is Mexico. Question two. A massive amount of Muppet productions were filmed in this country, ranging from Fraggle Rock to Emmet Otter’s Jug-band Christmas to The Cube.

[Clock ticking sound]

[Buzz in ding]

BECCA: Danny.

DANNY: Canada.

BECCA: It is Canada. Correct. J.D., do you appreciate that Cube reference?

J.D.: I was about to say. I didn’t know if it was okay for me to jump in and say thank you for shouting out The Cube, my fave.

BECCA: I know.

[Danny laughs]

BECCA: Question three. When Big Bird and Barkley went to this country, they met the Bamboo Princess.

[Clock ticking sound]

[Buzz in ding]

BECCA: Danny, by a second.

DANNY: Japan.

BECCA: That is Japan.

DANNY: I wrote about that special. It’s incredibly bizarre.

BECCA: Those Big Bird international specials and like, I feel like Don’t Eat the Pictures kind of fits into that.

DANNY: Yes. [laughs]

BECCA: It’s not  international but the vibes of him helping the Ancient Egyptian boy are basically the same.

DANNY: Yes, absolutely the same.

BECCA: They’re so weird but also so good and so special and I just…

DANNY: Yeah.

BECCA: I mean, honestly, I love any time they get the puppets out in the world.

DANNY: Yeah. Out in the world.

BECCA: But also yes, it’s very bizarre.

DANNY: It’s very strange. [laughs] If I remember, I think the Bamboo Princess turns into a…she becomes a phoenix at the end? It’s been a minute.

J.D.: The phoenix is in Big Bird in China.

BECCA: Yeah.

DANNY: Oh, the phoenix is in China. Okay, I remember the princess.

BECCA: Question four. On Muppets Tonight, a variety of Muppets, including Zelda Rose, Slim Wilson and Animal, sang a song about how they’ve got a lot of coffee in this country.

[Clock ticking sound]

[Buzz in ding]


J.D.: Brazil.

BECCA: It is Brazil. They’ve got an awful lot of coffee in Brazil. Question five. Two of the Muppets on this country’s version of Sesame Street are Pino and Tommy.

[Clock ticking sound]

[Buzz in ding]

BECCA: Danny.

DANNY: Is it Denmark? I’m feeling like it must not be Denmark.

BECCA: It is not Denmark. I’m sorry. J.D.?

DANNY: It’s gonna kill me.

J.D.: Eeehhhh. Germany?

BECCA: I’m sorry, the correct answer is The Netherlands.

DANNY: Okay.

J.D.: I was so afraid that you would start asking questions about international Sesame Street.

DANNY: There’s so much of it.

BECCA: There aren’t as many as you would think because I was like, there’s some people who are really good at this but a very small portion of our community. So I have only a couple questions about that.

DANNY: I thought I was better at it than apparently I am.

BECCA: I will say that long pause, which I might have edited out, but that pause was me trying to remember if Denmark and the Netherlands were the same country.

[Danny and J.D. laugh]

BECCA: Because I knew the Netherlands was sometimes called something else, and I was like, “Wait, is it Denmark?” No, it’s Holland was what I was confused about.

DANNY: Yeah.

BECCA: Listen, I know a lot about the Muppets. Less about Denmark.

DANNY: Actual geography.

BECCA: Question six. On Bear in the Big Blue House, Bear’s special friend Ursa is from this country.

[Clock ticking sound]

[Buzz in ding]

BECCA: Danny.

DANNY: Spain.

BECCA: It is Spain.

DANNY: Killing it on this. I really thought I would be far behind by this point.

BECCA: Question seven. On the Muppets 2015 TV show, this is the country where Miss Piggy found Gloria Estefan the penguin.

[Clock ticking sound]

[Buzz in ding]

BECCA: Danny.

DANNY: Is it Argentina?

BECCA: It is Argentina. Danny, you are crushing it today.

DANNY: I know. It’s amazing.

BECCA: Question eight. Squiggly, a worm from this country…

DANNY: Oh dear.

BECCA: [laughs] Squiggly, a worm from this country, won the one-yard dash in the worm summer games.

[Clock ticking sound]

[Buzz in ding]

BECCA: Danny, do you have a guess?

DANNY: Is it Holland?

BECCA: It is not Holland.

DANNY: Damn. How about the Netherlands. I knew as soon as you said Squiggly, I was like I’m out on this one.

J.D.: I guess I should take a guess.

BECCA: Yeah. J.D., do you have a guess?

J.D.: Um, I can’t remember the names of any countries in this moment. I’m so nervous right now. I didn’t think I’d be nervous. Uh, Cuba. I don’t know.

BECCA: Okay, it’s not Cuba.

DANNY: That’s where The Cube was filmed.

BECCA: Yeah. [laughs]

J.D.: Oh, no kidding. You’ll never get out. You’ll never get out of the Cuba.

BECCA: Yep, it’s true. It was, the correct answer was Kenya. They were doing a “Kenyans are good at racing” joke.

DANNY: Right.

BECCA: I don’t know Sesame Street. Sometimes you’re good. Question nine. According to reporting from Slate Magazine and The Atlantic, to people from Sweden, the Swedish Chef sounds like he is from this country.

[Clock ticking sound]

[Buzz in ding]


J.D.: Norway?

BECCA: It is Norway. Correct.

DANNY: Nice.

BECCA: Question 10. In Muppets Most Wanted, Jean Pierre Napoleon’s Interpol headquarters are in this country.

[Clock ticking sound]

[Buzz in ding]

BECCA: Danny.

DANNY: Is it France?

BECCA: It is not France.

DANNY: You were leading me on.

BECCA: Mmhmm.

J.D.: Isn’t it Germany?

BECCA: It’s not Germany either. You guys are missing a country that is kind of between them. Switzerland.

DANNY: Oh. Oh, that makes sense.

J.D.: Huh.

BECCA: Question 11. This is the country where Farscape was filmed.

[Clock ticking sound]

[Buzz in ding]

BECCA: Danny.

DANNY: It’s either Australia or New Zealand. I’m gonna go with Australia.

BECCA: It is Australia. Wow.

J.D.: Well done. Well done.

DANNY: I was around back then.

BECCA: I saw J.D. basically just getting up, getting up from his chair and leaving as soon as I mentioned Farscape.

J.D.: It’s true if you mention it a third time, I disappear.

BECCA: What are…what are you going to do the next time you see Ren?

Question 12. Former president of the Jim Henson Company, Charles Rivkin, was the US ambassador to this country.

[Clock ticking sound]

DANNY: You got us both on this one.

[Becca laughs]

J.D.: I know we’re not allowed to have the Muppet Wiki or any other reference for this. Can I have like a world map up in another window just so I can remember what other countries look like and where they are?

BECCA: You can look at a world map, J.D.

J.D.: This is allowed?


J.D.: That has to be allowed for both of us. We’re allowed a world map?

DANNY: [laughs] Alright. I do remember where the world is.

[clock ticking stops]

J.D.: That makes one of us.

DANNY: My guess is uh… is Uruguay.

BECCA: It is not Uruguay. Good, guess, I guess.

DANNY: [laughs] I could think of a country.

BECCA: J.D.? Just name a country.

J.D.: Name a country.

DANNY: Paraguay’s just sitting right there.

J.D.: South Korea.

BECCA: It’s also not South Korea. The correct answer is France. The president of the Jim Henson Company, or the former president, Charles Rivkin, was formerly the US ambassador to France.

DANNY: Do we know what he’s doing now?

BECCA: I don’t know. Being rich and not funding Muppet productions.

DANNY: Yeah, that’s true.

BECCA: Anyway, nice work in that round and figuring out those 12 countries. And I guess we have to assume that the other 96 countries didn’t matter.

Anyway, let’s move on to our next round, which we call (echo sounding voice) What’s the Name of that Name?

[Clip from Sesame Street “What’s the Name of That Song”]

BERT: It’s called…


MONSTER: Now, wait.

BERT: No, I think I’ve got it.

TOGETHER: No, that must be wrong.

[Clip ends]

BECCA: Now, we all know the names of our favorite Muppets: Kermit, Rowlf the Dog, Big Bird, Sopwith the Camel, Benny Rabbit. This is easy. But in other countries, our favorite friends often have different names. So, in this round, I’m going to name a country and give the name that country’s productions use for a well-known Muppet. And I will say these are all well-known Muppets. They are all, I would say, either…

DANNY: Top 10 at best. Yeah.

BECCA: Absolutely main characters, some are maybe like well-known secondary characters, but I’m not going to throw any characters that you guys don’t know. So let me start there.

DANNY: All right.

BECCA: If you can guess the Muppet’s English name from those clues, you will earn three points. If neither of you can name the Muppet, I will give you a clue about what Muppet series they’re from. If you get it right after that, you’ll earn two points instead. If that’s still not enough, I will name their original performer in the American-English-Canadian, whatever you want to call it, version of the Muppets. If you get it after all of those clues, you will earn one point.

DANNY: Please tell me that the step after that is you will do an imitation of the character.

BECCA: Yes. If it comes to that. Sure.

DANNY: I would gladly have zero points for that. That’ll be fun.

BECCA: So, for instance, if I said, “In Israel, they call him Mar Ashpach,” you’d say, “Oscar the Grouch.” If neither of you knew that, I would first say that it was a character from Sesame Street and you’d each get to guess again. Or, if that didn’t work, I would say that he was originally performed by Caroll Spinney and then you’d have two choices.

DANNY: [laughs] Alright.

BECCA: It’s not going to be Picklepuss. Anyway, I promise most of these are easier than Mar Ashpach. Are we ready to rename some of our favorites? Here we go.

[Clip of “Rubber Duckie” in German]

BECCA: Question one. Oh, and I should say before I even get into question one. I’m gonna do my best to pronounce these. I speak French very poorly. And Hebrew very poorly. And I am going to be trying my best with the other pronunciations.

DANNY: I believe in you.

BECCA: I would love for people to let us know on the ToughPigs forum or anywhere else, if there’s a better way that I can pronounce these names. But we’re diving right in with number one. In Brazil, they call him Come-Come.

[Clock ticking sound]

[Buzz in ding]


J.D.: I’ll throw out a random guess to get us started. Kermit the Frog.

BECCA: It is not Kermit the Frog. I’m sorry. Danny, do you have a guess for Come-Come?

DANNY: I do not. Let me have the…

BECCA: Okay.

DANNY: What’s the next…Yeah.

BECCA: If i give you the next one, J.D. will have the chance to buzz in again.

DANNY: That’s fine.

BECCA: Okay.

DANNY: I accept.

BECCA: The character Come-Come is from the Brazilian version of Sesame Street.

[Buzz in ding]

BECCA: Danny.

DANNY: I’m going to say Cookie Monster.

BECCA: It is the Cookie Monster. Correct. Because come is of course the Portuguese word for…?

DANNY: Food?

BECCA: It’s also the Spanish word for it. Eat. Yes. Eat. So, his name is literally “Eat Eat.”

[Danny laughs]

BECCA: Question two. In Italy she’s called Aurorabella.

[Clock ticking sound]

[Buzz in ding]


J.D.: Miss Piggy?

BECCA: I’m sorry. It’s not Miss Piggy. Danny, do you have a guess?

DANNY: Betty Lou.

BECCA: Not Betty Lou either.

DANNY: Darn.

BECCA: I’ll give you guys a clue. Character from Sesame Street.

[Buzz in ding]


J.D.: Prairie Dawn.

BECCA: It is Prairie Dawn, because of course if you know your Latin, Aurora is the Latin word for…

DANNY: Nice. Nice.

BECCA: Dawn.

DANNY: Dawn. Yeah, good call.

BECCA: Question three. Some of these you will be able to get that way. Not many of them. Question three. In Poland, they call him Bodzio.

[Clock ticking sound]

BECCA: I don’t know why I made this one the third one.

[Buzz in ding]

BECCA: As if this was an easy one. The first two are, like, based on root words you might remember from high school foreign language class. J.D., do you have a guess?

J.D.: Grover.

BECCA: Sorry, it’s not Grover. Danny, a guess?

DANNY: I’m gonna say Ernie?

BECCA: It’s not Ernie either but it is a Sesame Street character. You guys are right about that.

[Buzz in ding]

BECCA: Danny, guess?

DANNY: How about Bert?

BECCA: It’s not Bert either.

DANNY: Darn. All right.

BECCA: J.D., a guess?

J.D.: [makes thinking noises] Telly?

BECCA: It’s not Telly either. This is going to give it away but this character, in the American version of Sesame Street is currently performed by Ryan Dillon.

[Buzz in ding]


J.D.: Elmo.

BECCA: It is Elmo.

DANNY: Hooray.

J.D.: Now am I required to bring out the Elmo impression or is that only if we lose on all of them?

BECCA: I mean it’s up to you if you want him to say something in Polish, that’s your call.

J.D.: Well, I can’t do that. You got me there. All right, skip it, skip it, skip it. We’ll come to it when we come to it.

BECCA: Question four. In Germany, his first name is Honigtau.

[Clock ticking sound]

DANNY: First name.

[Buzz in ding]


J.D.: Fozzie Bear.

BECCA: It’s not Fozzie Bear. Danny, a guess?

DANNY: Guy Smiley.

BECCA: Not Guy Smiley either. This is a Muppet Show character. Honigtau.

[buzz in ding]


J.D.: I’m just so fascinated by the fact that you said his first name. That’s really interesting.

BECCA: I’m aware.

J.D.: Because there is that interview, was it on Arsenio Hall, where Kermit says Muppets don’t have last names but that’s not always true. The biggest counter example, the most obvious counter example I can think of is Floyd Pepper so that’ll be my next guess.

BECCA: It is not Floyd Pepper. Good guess of a Muppet who has a last name though. Danny, do you have a Muppet Show guess.

DANNY: Uh, JP Grosse.

BECCA: It’s not JP Grosse either. Okay. Third clue.

DANNY: I figured that was a long shot.

BECCA: On the American version of The Muppet Show, or, I guess British because that’s where it was filmed, this gets confusing. On the American version of The Muppet Show, this character, Honigtau, is played by Dave Goelz.

[Buzz in ding]

BECCA: Danny.

DANNY: Bunsen Honeydew.

BECCA: It is Bunsen Honeydew. Honigtau.

DANNY: That’s beautiful.

J.D.: Oh, well done.

BECCA: And his full name is Dr. Honigtau Bunsenbrenner which is why I had to leave off the last name.

Uh, question five. In Mexico, he’s Figaredo

[Clock ticking sound]

[Buzz in ding]

BECCA: Danny.

DANNY: Grover.

BECCA: Not Grover. J.D.?

J.D.: Ernie.

BECCA: Not Ernie. This is a Muppet Show character. Figaredo.

[Buzz in ding]

BECCA: Danny.

DANNY: I’ll say Fozzie.

BECCA: It is Fozzie.

DANNY: Hooray.

BECCA: Question six. In Israel, he’s Bentz.

[Clock ticking sound]

[Buzz in ding]


J.D.: Bert.

BECCA: It is Bert.

DANNY: Well done.

J.D.: It feels like…it feels like the two of us are throwing darts into a black hole and then getting a message later about what planet it landed on.

BECCA: Many of these kind of have clues in the names.

DANNY: Yeah.

BECCA: Question seven. In Canada he’s Magrebleu.

[Clock ticking sound]

BECCA: Magrebleu.

[Buzz in ding]


J.D.: I don’t know if we already have this character, but Grover.

BECCA: It is Grover.

J.D.: I assumed it was a play on the color blue in.

BECCA: It is a play on the color blue.

J.D.: I did, in my imagination, run a whole horrible fan site about characters who are fuzzy and blue and why we need to support them. So I should know.

DANNY: I have a question…Canada?

BECCA: Yeah, according to your wiki, Canada.

DANNY: Why doesn’t Canada call him Grover?

BECCA: I guess French Canadian productions.

DANNY: I guess so. Geez.

BECCA: I mean, Magrebleu is French.

DANNY: It’s French. Yeah.

BECCA: Well, speaking of France…question eight. In France, they call him Hyacinthe.

DANNY: It’s a beautiful name.

BECCA: It is a beautiful name.

[Clock ticking sound]

BECCA: That I know I’m pronouncing poorly.

[Buzz in ding]

BECCA: Danny.

DANNY: I’ll say Big Bird.

BECCA: Not Big Bird. Good guess.

DANNY: It would be nice though, wouldn’t it?

BECCA: Yeah.

DANNY: Cute name for him.

BECCA: J.D? [laughs] You can name your Big Bird Hyacinthe.

J.D.: How about The Great Gonzo?

BECCA: Not The Great Gonzo. This is a Sesame Street character. Hyacinthe.

[Buzz in ding]

BECCA: Danny.

DANNY: Uh, Mr. Snuffleupagus.

BECCA: Good guess. No. J.D.?

J.D.: Count von Count.

BECCA: Good guess. No. But I will say like Snuffleupagus and Count von Count, this character is most famously performed by Jerry Nelson. Hyacinthe.

[Buzz in ding]


J.D.: Herry Monster.

BECCA: It is Herry Monster.

DANNY: Nice. Nice.

BECCA: His name is Hyacinthe in France.

DANNY: That is so cute. Oh my goodness.

BECCA: I like that he’s got, like, this cute, really soft name. That’s actually fun.

DANNY: Yeah.

BECCA: Question nine. In the United Arab Emirates, he’s Anis.

[Clock ticking sound]

[Buzz in ding]

BECCA: Danny.

DANNY: I’m gonna say Ernie.

BECCA: Correct.


J.D.: Well done.

BECCA: Question 10. In Hungary, he’s Lótifuti.

[Clock ticking sound]

[Buzz in ding]

BECCA: Danny.

DANNY: Uh, Swedish Chef.

BECCA: Sorry, incorrect. J.D. a guess?

J.D.: Kermit the Frog?

BECCA: Good guess. No. This is a Muppet Show character. Lótifuti. And by the way, again, pronunciation terrible.

DANNY: Right.

BECCA: I’m doing like an Italian accent there like, (mimics Italian accent) “Oh Loti Futi.”

[Danny laughs]

[Buzz in ding]

BECCA: Danny.

DANNY: I’m gonna say either Statler or Waldorf.

BECCA: It’s not really fair to let you guess two. But I will say they’re both wrong. J.D.?

J.D.: Rowlf the Dog.

BECCA: Incorrect. This character was originally performed by Richard Hunt.

[Buzz in ding]

DANNY: Scooter.

BECCA: Correct, Danny it is Scooter.

DANNY: Yay. Narrowed that down.

BECCA: Yeah, we have two more.

DANNY: I get like 0.8 of a point for that.

BECCA: Two more or really one more and a bonus. So question 11. In Spain, he’s Bombo.

[Clock ticking sound]

[Buzz in ding]


J.D.: I can’t remember whether or not we’ve done this character. I feel like we have but maybe not. I’m gonna try Big Bird.

BECCA: We haven’t done Big Bird but it also isn’t Big Bird. Good guess though. Danny, a guess?

DANNY: Sorry. What country is it?

BECCA: Spain. He’s Bombo.

DANNY: I’m gonna say Cookie Monster.

BECCA: Incorrect. This is a character from Fraggle Rock.


[Buzz in ding]

BECCA: Danny.

DANNY: Gobo Fraggle.

BECCA: Incorrect. J.D.?

J.D.: Uncle Traveling Matt.

BECCA: Well, I will say this is the other Dave Goelz character.

[Buzz in ding]


J.D.: Boober Fraggle.

BECCA: Boober. Bombo is Boober.

J.D.: I was so close to…

BECCA: Come on. It even sounds like.

J.D.: I was so close to saying Boober. That was where I was gonna go. But then I thought, “Wait a second, that sounds like what you would name a character who’s supposed to be very silly and not very bright and someone who’s bumbling around everywhere.” And I’m like, Well that’s a decent name for Uncle Matt. He’s clownish in the right way for that name.” But no, no, no.

DANNY: That’s a solid argument actually. I think you should go to Spain and have that conversation with them.

BECCA: Go to Spain in 1983.

DANNY: Yeah. Look, all you can do is ask, right? They might say no.

[Becca and J.D. laugh]

J.D.: Okay.

DANNY: Miss every shot you don’t take.

BECCA: The last bonus question for this round. What is unique about Kermit the Frog’s full name in Portuguese speaking countries? No other country has this element to his name except those in Portuguese countries.

[Buzz in ding]

BECCA: Danny.

DANNY: They both start with the same letter.

BECCA: What do you mean by both? Kermit in Portugal?

DANNY: Yeah. The word for Kermit and the word for frog start with the same letter.

BECCA: I’m sorry. Not correct. I mean actually…

DANNY: They do, but it’s not unique.

BECCA: I don’t know if they do but I don’t think it’s unique that they do.

DANNY: Oh well.

BECCA: But anyway, that’s not the answer. J.D.? A guess?

J.D.: Because I’m only thinking of the same thing that Danny was thinking of. Not that specific detail, but another angle to the same thing. Like I know of this other name that Kermit used to have. And, so, is it…Are they the only places that used to have a different name for Kermit other than Kermit?

BECCA: No, there’s a couple they call him Renee in France.

J.D.: Okay.

BECCA: Um, but no. Only in Portugal and Brazil is Kermit a toad.


J.D.: Oh.

BECCA: His name translates to Kermit the Toad in Portugal and Brazil.

J.D.: I would not have gotten that one.

DANNY: Nope. Good question.

J.D.: And Kermit wouldn’t like that one.

[Danny laughs]


J.D.: Because he’s weird about that sometimes, right? Where he’s like, no I’m a frog. Toads, give you warts. Like he really seems to think badly about toads.

BECCA: That joke must not quite work in the Brazilian dub of The Muppet Movie.

Anyway. We’re going to move on to my favorite game.

[Clip from Sesame Street]

ANNOUNCER: Beat the Time.

[Sound effects]

 [Clip ends]

BECCA: That’s right. It’s our classic head-to-head round, (in echo sounding voice) Beat the Time.

(in normal voice) Today, we’re thinking about Muppet Show guest stars. The Muppet Show was always an international production. It was the brainchild of Americans but filmed and produced in the United Kingdom. As a result, a lot of the show’s guest stars were from the United States or the British Isles. And this tradition carried over to Muppets Tonight. However, on both shows, certain guests were from other parts of the world. And in this round, we’ll explore that. Starting with J.D. name a Muppet Show or Muppets Tonight guest star who wasn’t born in the United States or on the British Isles. So either on the Isle of Great Britain, The Isle of Scotland… Well, Scotland, Ireland, North Ireland, or the United States.

Be careful, some of these are trickier than others. We’ll go back and forth between the two of you to see who can name more. If you can’t remember one or get the answer wrong, your opponent will have a chance to steal. In total there are 15 Muppet Show or Muppets Tonight guests who fit this criteria.

J.D.: This is… Sorry I’m already nervous. Muppets Tonight is a show. I like actively avoid watching.

BECCA: Well, I will say, most of them are from The Muppet Show.

J.D.: Okay.

BECCA: J.D., can you name a guest from a country that isn’t one of the ones I listed.

[Clock ticking sound]

J.D.: Charles Aznavour.

BECCA: Charles Aznavour. Correct. Danny?

DANNY: Señor Wences.

BECCA: I am sorry. Oh no, no, no. Señor Wences is on here. I was like, “What?” I was like, so surprised.

[J.D. laughs]

BECCA: I was like, “Is he really American?” J.D.?

J.D.: I mean, it’s possible. It’s all possible. Um, Jean-Pierre Rampal.

BECCA: Jean-Pierre Rampal. Correct. Danny?

DANNY: Rudolph Nureyev.

BECCA: Rudolph Nureyev. Correct. J.D.?

J.D.: How much time do I have? Because I already feel like I’m out and that’s really concerning.

DANNY: I know. I’m kinda out as well.

J.D.: [laughs] This episode is so hard.

DANNY: It really is.

J.D.: And I’m still shaken by the jump scare from Jerry Nelson’s voice a few seconds ago. You know, you hear that part where like the whole tone of the episode changes when that voice comes in.


J.D.: Beat the time. Bleh. I get startled every time.

BECCA: That you absolutely heard here, live in studio.

J.D. Which I just heard. Yeah.

BECCA: And I don’t add on to the podcast later.

J.D.: This is all done live, folks. Like we have a studio audience here.

[Danny laughs]

BECCA: The cheering.

J.D.: Becca comes over and hands us points somehow.

[Becca and Danny laugh]

J.D.: Sorry, I’m stalling just… skip it. Skip me. Skip me.

DANNY: I appreciate it. It’s helping me a lot.

J.D.: Yeah, skip me. It’s Danny. Go.

BECCA: Okay. Danny, do you have one?

DANNY: I have Elke Sommer.

BECCA: Elke Sommer. Correct.

J.D.: Whoa. Good. Very good.

BECCA: J.D. Back to J.D. Actually, Danny, you get to steal because J.D. missed. You can give another one.

DANNY: No, I got… That’s… I’m Uh, let, let, let…Why don’t we let J.D. go?

BECCA: Okay, J.D. If neither of you can get it, I’ll just call the game here.

[Danny and J.D. laugh]

DANNY: It just feels like we should get better than five.

J.D.: Right. But it’s also a frustrating round because like I can think of guest stars who very much have it as part of their brand that they also know other languages. I don’t like to then make the assumption that I can tell where they were born. That’s what I’m struggling with.

BECCA: J.D. I promise, no one’s going to. No one’s going to call you, no one’s going to call you racist if you incorrectly know what country a guest star is from.

J.D.: All right. If you, Becca, I’m considering you the authority on all of the opinions of all of the internet. So I’m trusting you here when I guess Rita Moreno.

BECCA: I was considering Puerto Rico to be part of the United States.

J.D.: It is part of the United States and so I don’t get the point and so we’re good. And this is exactly the situation that I was worried was gonna happen.

BECCA: Okay, but that’s not–

J.D. Okay. Move on. Move on.

DANNY: (laughing) It’s totally fine.

BECCA: That’s not a…Wait, wait, hold on. I need to check when was it?

J.D.: Are you checking on when Puerto Rico became part of the United States?

BECCA: I’m trying, I’m trying to…

J.D. I appreciate this technicality. Thank you for giving me a chance here.

DANNY: It was well before. It was well before The Muppet Show.

BECCA: Oh yeah, no. Oh yeah, it was well before Rita Moreno.

DANNY: Uh, I have one other.

BECCA: Danny, do you have another guess?

DANNY: Juliet Prowse.

BECCA: Juliet Prowse…

J.D.: Oh, so good.

BECCA: …is technically born… Do you know, J.D? You’re really excited.

J.D.: I don’t know. What’s it gonna be?

BECCA: Danny, do you know or are you just guessing?

DANNY: I… it’s… where was Juliet Prowse born?

BECCA: India.

DANNY: There you go.

J.D.: Okay. When it was controlled by Britain but not part of the British Isles. So I will give it to you.

DANNY: I knew that. I was totally aware of all the bio details of Juliet Prowse’s life.

BECCA: I’m pretty sure she was born in… Am I wrong? Yeah, born in Bombay.

DANNY: All right.

BECCA: You never know. J.D., a guess?

J.D.: Uh I’m kind of flipping through every guest star on either show that I can think of. I’m really struggling to remember who the heck was on Muppets Tonight.

BECCA: I will tell you both, there are only two Muppets Tonight guests listed. Granted, there were fewer of those guests, in general.

DANNY: Right.

DANNY: I’m stuck on Roy Rogers and Dale Evans. I’m pretty sure.

BECCA: Okay.

DANNY: Pretty sure.

J.D.: They’re definitely British. Extremely British.

BECCA: Johnny Cash, also American. I’ll throw that out there.

DANNY: All right.

BECCA: I’ll help you out.

J.D.: You probably threw in some tricky ones where like you’d never know that this person wasn’t just like the most like…

BECCA: Okay. Do you guys, do you both want me to give you a hint?


BECCA: Okay. One thing that you guys are forgetting is while it is often confused for America or England, I did not say Canada is not allowed.

J.D.: You’re giving me a lot of credit for acting like I was confused about this and not just completely…

BECCA: Okay, but there’s certain…


DANNY: I was leaving all the Canadians… Yeah.

BECCA: There’s certain guests who are like some of the most famous Canadians.

DANNY: Celine Dion.

BECCA: Not a guest on either of these shows.

[J.D. laughs]

BECCA: I think I’m gonna have to call this.

J.D.: All right, let me. All right. I’m gonna…

DANNY: Oh, Rick Moranis.

BECCA: Rick Moranis, correct, Danny. Thank you.

DANNY: Hooray. Thank you for the Canada.

[J.D. laughs]

BECCA: Rick Moranis is Canadian.

J.D.: Ooookay.

BECCA: It’s why he played the moose in Brother Bear.

DANNY: Yep. It’s all I needed was Canada. You got any other countries. Actually if you can like throw out a country.

BECCA: Oh sure. Well, let me just double check some of these countries.

DANNY: I’m gonna make a rule.

BECCA: I should have written it down beforehand. But, um, Okay. Uh, we’ve got so the third one on my list from Switzerland.

DANNY: Got me on that one.

BECCA: Fourth one is Canadian.

DANNY: Orson Welles? Not the movie.

[Clock ticking stops]

BECCA: Okay, I’m just going to call it.

DANNY: All right. Yeah, I’m good.

BECCA: Alright. So the Swiss one is, of course, Mummenschanz.


J.D.: They’re from Earth?

DANNY: That’s on us.

BECCA: Space is not part of the United States either.

J.D.: Oh!

BECCA: Um, Rich Little, who is, of course, Canadian.

DANNY: Of course.

J.D.: We should have been, Danny, we should have been thinking of a way to not have to take credit for Rich Little this whole time.

[Becca and Danny laugh]

J.D.: It’s right here.

BECCA: Helen Reddy from Australia.

DANNY: Yeah.

BECCA: Um, Spike Milligan, born in India. Victor Borge, definitely not American. Anne Murray who was from Canada as well.

DANNY: Those fellow Canadians

BECCA: Doug Henning was Canadian. Martin Short was Canadian and was on Muppets Tonight. And literally is so Canadian that at Disney World, he hosts the Canada ride. And by ride, I mean room.

[Danny laughs]

BECCA: And that was the 15. But I also would have accepted Luke Skywalker, Chewbacca, R2D2, C3PO…

[Danny and J.D. laugh]

BECCA: And, AND Count von Count.

DANNY: Yes, all right.

J.D.: I was also thinking like is there a trick here with the Muppet performers where I can think of one of them? And I did not.

DANNY: That got you nowhere. Yeah.

J.D.: Wow, Becca, you are so many steps ahead of us.

BECCA: Well, listen, so maybe that game… Listen. Okay, out of 15, you guys together, got seven. So you got half of them. That’s something.

DANNY: Thank you. We feel better.

BECCA: That’s something.

J.D.: Yeah, I feel fantastic.

BECCA: And maybe you, maybe you weren’t thinking about the four guests who were from outer space.

J.D.: You know… I mean…

DANNY: Is this the point in the program where we have to slow down and take care of J.D.’s feelings.

J.D.: I think I’m okay. I think I’m having a great time here, Becca. I’m pretty sure. But I don’t know.

DANNY: You wouldn’t…can’t tell from the scoreboard.

BECCA: I don’t care what anyone says, I’m having a great time.

J.D.: What’s the scoreboard? Are we allowed to know that?

BECCA: Yeah, sure. Why don’t I share the scoreboard. Listen. It’s a pretty close game. Um, We have, right now… Okay, so Danny has 46 points. And J.D. has 37 points. So it’s only a difference of nine.

J.D.: Okay.

BECCA: And I will say, I will say, we’ve been saluting other nations but now it’s time to salute America.

DANNY: All right.

[Clip of Sam the Eagle plays]



EAGLE: At times like this, I am proud to be an American.



FROG: Thank you

[Clip ends]

BECCA: You know. There’s so many things to love about the United States. Everything. The United States is perfect and everything about it is wonderful.

J.D.: Uh, did you read my old fan site?

BECCA: I did.

J.D.: I really try to stay away from people who read that.

[Danny laughs]

BECCA: And if there’s one thing we know, not only is the United States perfect, but the most perfect thing about the United States are our country’s politicians. So that’s why we are going to play a special round of (in echo sounding voice) Mystery Guest (in normal sounding voice) themed on US presidents. I’m going to describe a time the Muppets mentioned, referenced or featured a US president in one of their productions. Your job is to buzz in and identify the president.

So, for instance, if I said, “Forgetful Jones imagined meeting this president after he discovered the Martians.” You’d buzz in and say, “Ronald Reagan.”

DANNY: Okay.

BECCA: That happened.

[Danny laughs]

BECCA: I believe Scott posted that clip on Twitter a while ago.

DANNY: Yeah.

BECCA: But anyway. I do apologize to our international listeners. This round is about us. And each of these questions. And you know what? Let’s mix it up. Each of these questions is going to be worth…

DANNY: A random number of points.

BECCA: …three points.

J.D.: [laughs] Becca, open a random number generator, please.

DANNY: Yeah.

BECCA: Oh no, no, no. Each of these questions is worth the amount of points that this president is. How’s that? Will you guys be happy with that?

DANNY: [laughs] Yes.

BECCA: If the answer is, you know…

DANNY: Abraham Lincoln.

J.D.: Yeah, I’m pretty happy with that. Yeah.

DANNY: Abraham Lincoln probably gets a pretty high score.

BECCA: Oh no, no, no. I just mean like so, okay, so James Buchanan was like the 15th president. So like…

DANNY: Oh, so you’d get 15 points.

BECCA: You’d get 15 points if the answer is James Buchanan.

DANNY: Oh, alright.

BECCA: You want me to mix it up that way, J.D.?

J.D.: You know, do whatever you want. I’m here, I have accepted my fate and I’m happy. I’m very happy.

DANNY: Yeah, let’s just keep going.

BECCA: They’re worth three points each. I will make them worth three points each because I want to make this anyone’s game.

J.D.: Oh, so it’s out of kindness to me. All right, that’s fine.

BECCA: Question one. In the Paula Abdul episode of Muppets Tonight, a robot version of this president terrorizes the studio.

[Clock ticking sound]

[Buzz in ding]


J.D.: I think Danny got in before me.

BECCA: Oh, it was Danny. Look at that. J.D., I appreciate your sportsmanlike conduct. That’s very patriotic. Danny.

J.D.: And I will also say I think, did you buzz in right before she said the final word or right after? Because you might just have a faster signal than me, but like that buzz-in was coming in just as I was hearing the end of the word.

BECCA: Well, we’re not going to recalibrate the buzzers.

J.D.: You’re right. Sorry. Go ahead. Move on.

BECCA: Danny. What president was this?

DANNY: I cannot tell a lie. It was Abraham Lincoln.

[J.D. laughs]

BECCA: Correct.

DANNY: And thank you, J.D., for your sportsmanlike conduct.

BECCA: Question two. Grover helped this U.S. president win a significant military victory.

[Clock ticking sound]

[Buzz in ding]


J.D.: George Washington.

BECCA: It is George Washington. Correct. He heard that George Washington wanted to surprise the Hessian soldiers, so he brought balloons. Question three. Joe Pesci played a parody of this president in Sesame Street’s 25th anniversary special.

[Clock ticking sound]

[Buzz in ding]


J.D.: Was it Donald Trump?

BECCA: It was Donald Trump. Wasn’t president at the time of course, but…

[Danny laughs]

BECCA: Question four. Rowlf the Dog in an episode of The Muppets, asks this trivia question: Who succeeded President William McKinley after he was assassinated in 1901. Hint, it wasn’t a dog. Canine-Americans still can’t hold public office.

DANNY: And we’re supposed to answer the…

BECCA: Yeah, answer the trivia question.

DANNY: …that trivia question.

BECCA: Who succeeded President William McKinley after he was assassinated in 1901? The dog thing’s a misdirect.

[Clock ticking sound]

[Buzz in ding]

DANNY: I’m gonna say uh…

BECCA: Danny.

DANNY: Theodore Roosevelt.

BECCA: It is Theodore Roosevelt. Correct.

J.D.: Wow.

BECCA: Question five. In The Muppets, the 2011 film, Kermit has this president’s number in his rolodex of celebrities.

[Clock ticking sound]

[Buzz in ding]


J.D.: President Carter.

BECCA: It is President Carter. Question six. In a Sesame Street sketch about the American Revolution, Don Music plays a frustrated version of this president.

[Clock ticking sound]

[Buzz in ding]

BECCA: Danny.

DANNY: Is is Thomas Jefferson?

BECCA: It is Thomas Jefferson. Question seven. In a different Sesame Street sketch about determining what should be the national bird, Ernie portrays this president who remained level headed when making his choice of the national bird.

[Clock ticking sound]

[Buzz in ding]


J.D.: Uh, John Adams.

BECCA: Correct. Question eight. I guess I’ll give you six points if you get both of these. These two presidents appear as members of the Billy Crystal band on Muppets Tonight.

[Clock ticking sound]

[Buzz in ding]

BECCA: Danny.

DANNY: Uh, Bill Clinton.

BECCA: Bill Clinton is one.

DANNY: Is one of them. And there’s a second president?

BECCA: There is a second president in line with Bill Clinton in that scene.

DANNY: Uh, George Bush.

BECCA: Okay, it is not George Bush. I will give you three points.

DANNY: Thank you.

BECCA: J.D., do you want to guess a president?

J.D.: Oof. I mean, there are only so many.

DANNY: And it was 1996.

J.D.: Yeah. You normally don’t like it when the answer to one question has already been the answer to another question? So I’m going to try to just think of someone different. Um…

BECCA: Look at J.D meta-gaming.

J.D.: I know. I do that. I know. And yet, right now, here’s the thing, that’s great that I can do that. But right now, I’m blanking on the name of every president.

DANNY: [laughs] Uh, William Howard Taft.

J.D.: Uh, Constantine. It was Constantine.

BECCA: It was Ronald Reagan.

J.D.: Okay.

DANNY: Oh. Nice.

J.D.: My meta-gaming was very wrong.

BECCA: Well, technically, he was the answer to my practice question, but yes. Question nine. He was the only president to write for Muppet Magazine.

[Clock ticking sound]

[Buzz in ding]

BECCA: Danny.

DANNY: Barack Obama.

[J.D. laughs]

BECCA: Incorrect.

DANNY: Would have been nice.

J.D.: Oh, I don’t even know how to interpret the question.

[Danny laughs]

BECCA: There’s really no trick here.

J.D.: It’s pretty genuine? Okay. George H. W. Bush.

BECCA: The correct answer is Gerald Ford, who in the fall 1983 issue of Muppet Magazine, he contributed to Robin’s Roundup, an article featuring memories from celebrities’ school days. Ford shares sentiments about his high school teachers and laments on his sports activities at South High in Grand Rapids, Michigan.

DANNY: That is adorable.

BECCA: There is a screenshot here from…

DANNY: Robin’s Roundup.

BECCA: Robin’s Roundup.

DANNY: Not, I believe, a long-running feature of Muppet Magazine because I didn’t remember Robin’s Roundup ever existing.

BECCA: Uh, well, I will say this was the fourth issue. And care to guess who’s on the cover for 150 points?

DANNY: Fourth issue.

BECCA: Because I don’t think you can get this.

DANNY: It’s Olivia Newton John or Bronson Pinchot.

BECCA: It is neither. J.D. do you have a guess for 150 points?

DANNY: [laughs] Oh no.

J.D.: [laughs] Uh, looking around the room. Looking around the room. Uh, Herb Alpert.

BECCA: Uh, no, uh, the special was Fozzie Meets the Fonz. Henry Winkler also included school memories with Carol Burnett, Pat Benatar, and more. Gerald Ford didn’t make the cover of school memories.

DANNY: I can see that.

BECCA: And The Wizard of Oz spoof, which I bet was funnier than the other time the Muppets did that.

Question 10. This president is actually Caroll Spinney’s ninth cousin, twice removed.

[Clock ticking sound]

BECCA: It’s on your wiki, Danny.

DANNY: I’m certain that it is. It’s ninth cousin?

BECCA: His ninth cousin, twice removed.

[Buzz in ding]

DANNY: All right. I got it. George W. Bush.

BECCA: It is not George W. Bush. J.D.?

J.D.: George H. W. Bush.

[Danny laughs]

BECCA: Okay, well, they’d both be related at that point.

J. D.: True, but not to same…you gave…you didn’t ask whose related. You asked for a very specific relation.

BECCA: Uh no. Weirdly enough, the right answer…


BECCA: …Barack Obama.

DANNY: Oh, all right then. That’s beautiful. I wonder if they ever hung out. Big Bird. He must have visited the Obama white house. Yeah. No. Because Michelle was doing all kinds of things.

BECCA: Yeah. But was Vogel doing in-person appearances by then because Caroll was already pretty–

DANNY: I don’t know.

BECCA: Yeah, I mean. Why don’t you know? It’s got to be…it’s got to be–

DANNY: It’s on the wiki somewhere.

BECCA: Yeah it’s got to be on your wiki. Well, believe it or not you both scored the same amount of points that round.


BECCA: Meaning that the score is right now, Danny with 58 points and J.D. with 49 points. Honestly, it’s still very close. Difference of nine points. And is now time for the (in echo sounding voice) Anything in the World Prize Game. (in normal voice) As you know, in this round, you two will be able to ask me anything you want. As long as it’s about Muppets. If you stump me, you will earn 15 points.

So let’s actually start with Danny. So Danny, you can ask me anything in the world.

DANNY: All right. My question is about America.

BECCA: That’s part of the world.

DANNY: Yes, it is. Senator Joe Mccarthy is remembered for his anti-communist crusade in the early 1950s, which began with a famous speech where he announced, “I have here in my hand a list of known communists working in the state department.”

J.D.: Whatever this question is, I love it.

DANNY: [laughs] Becca, what Muppet has also announced, “I have a list?” And what was on that list? I am so glad you didn’t know this immediately.

BECCA: Sam the Eagle.


BECCA: Words that you aren’t allowed to say on ABC TV because of the Muppets sitcom.

DANNY: Uh, no. You are half correct?

BECCA: Okay, but there’s no half credit.

DANNY: You got Sam the Eagle.

BECCA: Okay. What was the context?

DANNY: It is a Muppet Show sketch. Probably like second season, I would say. Um, he says, I have a list and he is complaining about namby-pamby conservationists.


DANNY: And the list is the list of animals that the namby-pamby conservationists want to protect and it includes bald eagle.

BECCA: That’s right. Well, that’s 15 points for you, Danny.

DANNY: All right.

BECCA: J.D., do you have a question? Do you have a question about communists?

[Becca and Danny laugh]

J.D.: Uh, well, you know, if you’ve read my work, you know my interpretation of Fraggle Rock.

BECCA: I do.

J.D.: Becca, in Fraggle Rock: Back to the Rock, episode six of season one. I’m going to start calling it season one already. It’s “The Legend of Icy Joe.” In that episode of Back to the Rock, you see pictures of a number of prominent, like famous people in Doc’s workshop, including some like very famous prominent American political figures. Only one such person is seen twice in Doc’s workshop. Appears in two pictures. Who is that famous American political figure?

BECCA: Is it Ruth Bader Ginsburg?

J.D.: I’m pretty sure she is there.

BECCA: She’s there.

J.D.: On Doc’s wall of sheroes. She is there. Not twice.

BECCA: Okay, the correct answer was.

BECCA: The correct answer is Michelle Obama. There are two Michelle Obamas on Doc’s wall of sheroes.

BECCA: All right. Well, that actually would have been my second guess but it was not my first guess. So, J.D. you also get 15 points.

DANNY: Good question.

BECCA: Meaning that you again got the same number of points. Meaning that again, Danny, you have 73 points. J.D., you have 64. Meaning Danny is up by nine. Which brings us to our last game which is, of course, (in an echo sounding voice) Say the Word. (in normal sounding voice) As you know, in Say the Word you are able to wager any number of points, the winner gets those points and the loser loses them. It’s kind of like Final Jeopardy. Except you will get to hear the question before you wager.

So, here’s the question. The most famous American is probably George Washington. As mentioned, he’s been played by an anything Muppet in a sketch with Grover. However, throughout the years and through different Muppet media, many Muppets have impersonated him. However, not as many as you’d think. In fact, by Muppet Wiki’s count, five Muppets have impersonated George Washington. Although some have done it more than once. Each of you is going to send me a list of five Muppet characters and a points amount that you would like to bet.

Whoever gets more Muppets correct will win their points back.

DANNY: Alright.

BECCA: So, There are five Muppet characters who have impersonated George Washington, who have dressed up as George Washington. I’m not counting anything Muppets. Five Muppet characters who have dressed as George Washington at some point in Muppet media. What I need you guys to do is send me a list of five Muppets as well as your point bet.

[Clock ticking sound]

BECCA: And I will just say score again. Danny has 73 points. J.D. has 64 points. Okay, I have an answer from Danny.

[Click ticking stops]

BECCA: Okay. Like I said, there are five correct answers to this question. J.D., let’s start with you. J.D., you bet first double infinity points and then I said that you had to bet an actual number. So you changed that bet to 10. And you wrote which five Muppets?

J.D.: Miss Piggy was the one I was certain of and then I guessed Cookie Monster, Elmo, Ernie, Bert.

BECCA: Okay, Miss Piggy is definitely correct. As is Elmo, who dressed as George Washington and sang a song from Hamilton with the actor who was playing George Washington at the time. And you are also right that Bert was George Washington on that amazing Sesame Street bicentennial calendar. Cookie Monster and Ernie were never George Washington, at least not according to Muppet Wiki. So three of yours are correct.

Danny, you also bet 10 points.

[Danny laughs]

J.D.: Ohoho.

BECCA: And you listed five Muppets. Danny, which five Muppets did you guess?

DANNY: I guessed Miss Piggy, Kermit the Frog, Bert, Ernie and Grover. Okay, Ernie, as we established, is wrong, but Miss Piggy and Bert are right. Grover also was never George Washington in any media.

However, Kermit the Frog was.

DANNY: Was it for coins?

BECCA: It was. It was for a state quarters promotion.

DANNY: There you go.

BECCA: As well as baby Kermit was George Washington on Muppet Babies. So you also did note Mount Rushmore from The Muppet Show: Sex and Violence.

[J.D. laughs]

BECCA: I think that doesn’t count.

DANNY: That’s an actual George Washington Muppet.

BECCA: Doesn’t count.

DANNY: All right. Very well.

BECCA: You also bet 10 points and you also got three.

DANNY: Three answers right. There you go.

[J.D. and Danny laugh]

BECCA: You both get 10 points. (laugh) Meaning that you also got the same amount of points once again.

DANNY: Fate. It must be fate.

J.D.: Now what does this tell you? What this tells you is that my career as a Muppet fan continues to directly parallel that of Danny Horn.

[Becca and Danny laugh]

BECCA: It all comes full circle.

DANNY: Just one step behind me.

BECCA: How could you guys forget that fifth Muppet? Because Kermit, Miss Piggy, Elmo and Bert were the ones that you got between you. But of course, the fifth is Elvis.

[Danny laughs]

J.D.: [laughs] Elvis. Yeah. I…okay. I remember now from the show that I actively avoid watching. Yeah. Okay.

BECCA: Those great moments in Elvis history.

DANNY: [laughs] Well done. That’s awesome.

J.D.: Becca, well done.

DANNY: Yeah.

BECCA: Anyway, so our final score, which has remained with a difference of nine points since we ended our third round? I don’t remember. But the winner with a score of 83 points is Danny Horn.

DANNY: Hooray! Thank you very much.

J.D.: Congrats. Take a bow. Take a bow.

DANNY: Ah, thank you.

BECCA: Danny, congratulations. You are this week’s Toughest Pig. The mantle once again falls to you. You gave it up in like 2005.

DANNY: (laughing) Yeah.

BECCA: And you just got it back.

DANNY: Hooray! For a whole week.

BECCA: Yeah, for a week.

DANNY: That’s exciting.

BECCA: So anyway, you win your choice of a magnet of Harry Truman or a magnet of Sam the Eagle.

DANNY: Uh, I’m gonna say Sam the Eagle.

BECCA: All right.

DANNY: Unless that was Herry Truman, which is Herry Monster dressed up as Harry Truman.

BECCA: Well, I didn’t make that. But now I kind of want to.

DANNY: [laughs] Okay, I will take the Sam the Eagle and I will treasure it. Thank you so much.

BECCA: You’re welcome. And that brings us to the end of another one. So, first of all, J.D., thank you for being such a good sport. I’m sorry that you were getting a little frustrated but you bounced back.

J.D.: Don’t apologize. I’ve had a good time. I’ve had a great– Becca, this is always fun. I appreciate it very much. I’m very happy.

BECCA: And you brought it full circle with your great parallel lives. So J.D., where can people find you if you wish to be found?

J.D.: On most socials, I’m @JD11PC. What socials will those be by the time you hear this? Obviously who’s to say?

DANNY: Anyone’s guess.

J.D.: Spin a wheel. We’ll find out. You can probably, if Twitter’s still around, still find the old Bad Henson Bio and Bad Henson Bistro archives, if you want to see some really weird nonsense that I did a couple years ago. And you can always just keep an eye on ToughPigs. ToughPigs will post my newest stuff before I know it’s been posted and so that is the place to look.

DANNY: All right.

J.D.: Oh, and of course. I was about to tell people to subscribe to The Great Muppet Fandom Panel, but if you’re subscribed to this feed, if you’re listening to this, I think you’re good.

BECCA: Yeah, it’ll show up. J.D. I’m waiting. And I’m waiting to be on a real episode and not a patreon exclusive episode.

J.D.: I know. You free in a couple weeks?

BECCA: I’m always free for podcasts.

J.D.: We’ll talk.

BECCA: I make time for podcasts. Should get that printed on a t-shirt. And J.D., you know, I should also say, like I said, love your podcast.

J.D.: Well, thank you.

BECCA: But also that Bad Henson Bio, Bad Henson Bistro stuff is hilarious.

DANNY: Very funny.

BECCA: And I’m glad it’s still out there.

DANNY: Yeah.

J.D.: Thank you. Danny, I didn’t know that you’d seen any of that stuff.

DANNY: Oh yeah. No, I thought they were hilarious. Yeah, I didn’t realize it was you.

J.D.: Yeah, I know. I wasn’t totally public about it because I went way off the rails with Bad Henson Bio.

DANNY: (laughing) Very silly. (in normal voice) The bistro actually. It was the bistro that really impressed me that like how long you were able to keep that rolling. Yeah.

BECCA: Danny where can people find you if you wish to be found?

DANNY: Well, my Muppet-relevant project is Muppet pictures. You can find me on Twitter or Facebook. And also take a look for the Superheroes Everyday podcast. It’s on Spotify. You can also find me like Twitter and Facebook talking about those. Or any place that you get your podcasts.

BECCA: All right and hey, you can find me on ToughPigs is probably again the only one that I’m sure will not fall apart by the time this episode is released.

J.D.: Now you’ve done it.

BECCA: Hey, listen, it lasted this long. It lasted longer than Twitter. [laughs] You can find me on Twitter @unclepetunio. That’s uncle like Uncle Sam. And then petunio, which is like the flower with an O instead of an A. And I’m on the other socials @Tallgirlpetunia. So that’s Instagram. Bluesky. Threads. Tumblr. Discord. I don’t know.

DANNY: Whatever. All of ‘em.

BECCA: We’re just throwing darts at the wall, trying to see what sticks. But most importantly, you could find ToughPigs online at Toughpigs.com or at any of the many social media services. All the ones I listed. You can find us there and of course you can also find ToughPigs at Teepublic. Check out the ToughPigs Teepublic. We’ve got a couple fun shirt designs. One themed after (in echo sounding voice) Hubba-Wha?!, (in normal voice)  a Grover one. I designed a couple pride merch shirts that I think we still have floating around. So lots of fun stuff there. And you can support us on the ToughPigs patreon where you could get access to some more free stuff. Like the episode of J.D.’s podcast that I’m on.

I’d like to thank a couple people for helping out. Of course, both of our guests. Thank you so much and thank you for putting up with a weird one. But I’d like to thank Staci Rosen for writing the theme music for the show; Richard Gomez for doing the host artwork.

Thanks to Joe Hennes, the ToughPigs Muppet fan podcast executive producer. And thanks to Traveling Matt, for encouraging us all to explore the world around us. Oh yeah. And also, thanks to me for writing the show, hosting the show, editing the show.

DANNY: [laughs] Thank to you, Becca. Thank you.

J.D.: Thank you, Becca.

BECCA: Thank me. And lastly, thanks to all of you at home for being with us on (in echo sounding voice) Hubba-Wha?! (in normal sounding voice) the Muppet quiz show. And as always, patriotism swells in the heart of the American bear.

[Hubba-Wha?! Theme music plays]

[Clip from Sesame Street plays]

ERNIE: (singing to music) George Washington Bridge.

BERT: Uh-huh.

ERNIE: George Washington Washington bridge. George Washington bridge. George Washington bridge. George Washington Washington bridge.

BERT: Ernie.

[Clip ends]

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